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Where the nuclear industry makes waste water discharges to rivers which have drinking water abstraction on them, radio-isotopes which could potentially be harmful or those with long half-lives such as Tritium will form part of the routine monitoring suite. Many aspects of academic research and industrial research such as in pharmaceuticals, health products, and many others relies on accurate water analysis to identify substances of potential use, to refine those substances and to ensure that when they are manufactured for sale that the chemical composition remains consistent.

The analytical methods used in these area can be very complex and may be specific to the process or area of research being conducted and may involve the use of bespoke analytical equipment.

Recent trends in water analysis triggering future monitoring of organic micropollutants

In environmental management, water analysis is frequently deployed when pollution is suspected to identify the pollutant in order to take remedial action. Such forensic work can examine the ratios of various components and can "type" samples of oils or other mixed organic contaminants to directly link the pollutant with the source. In drinking water supplies the cause of unacceptable quality can similarly be determined by carefully targeted chemical analysis of samples taken throughout the distribution system. To ensure consistency and repeatability, the methods use in the chemical analysis of water samples are often agreed and published at a national or state level.

By convention these are often referred to as "Blue book"s [6] [7]. Depending on the components, different methods are applied to determine the quantities or ratios of the components. While some methods can be performed with standard laboratory equipment, others require advanced devices, such as Inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry ICP-MS.

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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Environment Agency. November Retrieved 30 July Archived from the original on 2 April August Selected components of water coolers, such as soldered joints within the fixtures or the lining of the tank, may contain lead alloys U. EPA, b. In the United States, legislation limiting the weighted average lead content of pipes, pipe fittings and plumbing fittings to 0. Organic lead compounds e. Lead can also be present in some products used in recreational activities, including weights for fishing and diving, lead shot for hunting, artist-grade paints and glazes for pottery, as well as glass blowing and screen printing supplies.

However, there are no permissible uses of lead in food or cosmetics in Canada Health Canada, a. Since the prohibition of leaded fuels, the primary source of lead in the environment has been the mining and smelting of lead ores and ores in which lead is a by-product or contaminant ATSDR, Release of lead also occurs from factories that use lead, lead alloys and other lead compounds.

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Other significant sources include air travel, owing to the use of leaded fuels in smaller aircraft, and electrical utilities that release lead as a result of burning coal and other lead-contaminated fuels. In , lead release was estimated to be kg in air, 16 kg in water and kg on land, for a total of kg Health Canada, a.

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However, these numbers are assumed to be underestimates of total release because of the number of facilities that are not required to report to the NPRI, as well as additional lead sources. Despite lead reduction measures, lead exposure remains a concern because of the presence of older lead-containing materials in the environment and ongoing uses of lead. Lead released in the atmosphere exists primarily in the form of particles. Small lead particles can travel considerable distances, whereas larger particles i. Lead is removed from air primarily through rain, but it can also precipitate via dry deposition.

Various compounds of lead are released in the atmosphere as a result of the many emission sources. Additional lead can deposit onto soil from chipping and weathering of lead-based paints from housing, buildings and other structures. The association of lead with soil particles is very strong. For this reason, past uses of lead, including its addition to gasoline, represent an important contribution to lead levels measured in soils today ATSDR, The mobility of lead in soil is generally limited; thus, deposited lead will tend to remain in the upper layer of the soil, with limited leaching to groundwater.

However, the fate of lead will depend on many factors, including soil pH, soil type, organic matter content in soil and the concentration of lead within the soil NSF, ; Reddy et al. Acidity greatly increases the solubility of lead and is considered the most important factor in determining lead mobilization.

Solubilization can occur at pH levels below 6 and increases substantially in more acidic conditions U. EPA, In addition to acidic conditions, decreased organic matter onto which lead can be adsorbed and the presence of lead at concentrations that exceed or approach the cation exchange capacity of soil will also increase the mobility of lead, leading to potential runoff to surface water, leaching to groundwater or uptake by plants.


Such environmental conditions are more likely to occur near lead smelting sites. Lead can be found in surface water, but generally at low concentrations. Soluble lead concentrations will generally increase with acidic conditions i. The dissolved salt content is another important factor in determining lead solubility and, thus, the concentration of lead in surface water.

Above pH 5.

Water testing

However, a significant portion of lead found in surface water consists of insoluble particles of lead compounds or lead-containing soil particulate resulting from erosion. The concentrations of lead in mountain drainage water were shown to be similar to levels from the weathering of bedrock and soil. Lead particles were shown to coprecipitate and adsorb onto surfaces of iron-rich particles, such as iron oxides. Lead compounds can be degraded or chemically transformed within air, soil and water.

U.S. EPA Contaminated Site Cleanup Information (CLU-IN)

However, the elemental lead within these compounds cannot be broken down. Lead does not biomagnify in aquatic or terrestrial food chains. However, bioconcentration can occur in plants and animals, especially in areas that are contaminated by lead. Older organisms tend to contain the greatest body burdens of lead. Organisms that are in contact with soil and sediment, such as aquatic benthic invertebrates and algae, tend to contain the highest levels of lead. Lead is present in tap water principally as a result of dissolution corrosion from components of distribution and household plumbing systems that contain lead, such as pipes, fittings, solder or service connections to homes.

Corrosion can be caused by several factors, including the type of materials used, the age of the piping and fittings, the stagnation time of the water in pipes and the water quality e. Lead service lines have been shown to be a consistently high source of lead for many years after being installed under various conditions Britton and Richards, ; Schock et al. Lead concentrations at the tap originating from lead solders and brass fittings were thought to decline with age, with the highest lead concentrations appearing in the first year following installation Birden et al.

More recent studies, conducted under continuous flow conditions, have shown that when lead is released in the dissolved form from solder and fittings, concentrations diminish over time Kirmeyer et al. A number of studies have identified several factors that can result in the release of high levels of lead into the water long after installation of lead service lines, solders and brass fittings, including water quality characteristics e. Lead release can be significant when particulate material is present in the water or is subsequently trapped in the tap aerator. The sources of these particulates include lead solder particles, pipe deposit solids, dezincification of brasses and adsorption onto iron or manganese particles originating from the distribution system Hulsmann, ; Lytle et al.

The relative contribution of lead in dissolved lead and particulate forms is not clearly understood and likely varies with water chemistry, plumbing configuration, stagnation time, flow regime, age of the plumbing materials containing the lead and use patterns Hulsmann, ; Deshommes et al. The presence of particulate lead in drinking water is sporadic, unpredictable and often associated with mechanical disturbances to the system; it has recently been shown to also result from galvanic corrosion Sandvig et al.

Galvanic solder corrosion resulting from disinfectant or coagulant changes has been identified as an important factor leading to elevated lead levels Edwards and Dudi, ; Edwards and Triantafyllidou, ; Nguyen et al. Several studies have identified changes in the chloride to sulphate mass ratio CSMR resulting from a coagulant change as the driver of lead release from brass due to galvanic corrosion Edwards and Triantafyllidou, ; Nguyen et al. Galvanic corrosion resulting from partial lead service line replacement has also been shown to increase concentrations of both dissolved and particulate lead Sandvig et al.

Lead has also occasionally been found in drinking water as a result of the weathering of certain rock formations into the groundwater Hamilton Health and Social Services, In , a public health advisory was issued to all rural City of Hamilton residents located above the Niagara Escarpment whose drinking water supply was obtained from a drilled well. Residents were advised that there was a potential for high lead levels in some wells due to naturally occurring lead in the bedrock Richardson, Lead is found ubiquitously in the environment as a result of its extensive anthropogenic use over a substantial period of time as well as its natural occurrence.

Canadians are exposed to small amounts of lead through various environmental media, including water, food, air and soil, as well as consumer products. EPA, , However, food and drinking water are now the primary sources of lead exposure for average adult populations, because of significant reductions of lead in products such as gasoline and paints. Inhalation can also be an important route of exposure for individuals residing in the vicinity of point sources. Exposure to lead in drinking water can be properly assessed only by monitoring lead levels at the tap.

This is because lead is present in tap water principally as a result of dissolution corrosion from components of distribution and household plumbing systems that contain lead. However, the concentration of lead can vary significantly both across a system and within an individual site Karalekas et al.

EPA, ; Schock and Lemieux, , making the assessment of lead exposure from drinking water challenging.

Analytical methods for measuring air pollutants (CHE)

Monitoring of lead at the tap can be done using different sampling protocols; the selection of an appropriate protocol must take into consideration the desired objective, such as identifying sources of lead, effectively controlling corrosion or estimating exposure to lead. Lead concentrations were sampled at 65 sites in all provinces and territories in the summer and winter seasons during — for the National Survey of Disinfection By-Products and Selected Drinking Water Contaminants in Canadian Drinking Water — Health Canada, However, the results are not statistically representative of Canadian population exposure.

Samples were collected from the distribution system after 10 minutes of flushing, representing treated and distributed water, and analyzed after hot acid digestion by inductively coupled plasma—mass spectrometry ICP-MS , with a method detection limit MDL of 0. The average concentration in winter was 0.

The average concentration for summer samples was 1.

Analysis of water chemistry - Wikipedia

Provincial, territorial and municipal databases that include lead concentrations in drinking water supplies are available. These compliance databases contain the results of water quality analyses, including the concentrations of lead. It must be recognized that many provinces and territories assess compliance for lead based on a flushed sample.

The Ontario Drinking Water Surveillance Program database includes concentrations of lead in raw and treated water as well as concentrations of lead at the tap OMOE, The lead concentrations ranged from below 0. The Province of Ontario changed its regulatory requirements for sampling of lead in June and now requires that samples be collected after 30 minutes of stagnation from homes known or suspected to have lead service lines Government of Ontario, In a Community Lead Testing Program conducted in —, lead concentrations were analyzed in more than 37 samples collected in two sampling campaigns.

Subsequent to these campaigns, eight communities were identified for another sampling round in In Prince Edward Island, over 10 samples were collected from private wells between and In Portage la Prairie, Manitoba, samples were collected between and , and lead concentrations ranged from 0. In Saskatchewan, the median lead concentration for samples analyzed was reported to be 6.

A number of corrosion studies have been undertaken since The studies used a variety of sampling protocols with highly variable results for lead in drinking water Hayes and Croft, ; Health Canada, c; Hayes et al. In Alberta, a corrosion optimization study analyzed lead levels in 12 sequential 1 L samples from 12 homes supplied by a lead service line in Edmonton and Calgary six homes in each city after 30 minutes and 6 hours of stagnation. The peak lead concentrations for Edmonton ranged from 1.

The peak lead concentrations for Calgary ranged from 5. In Manitoba, a study was conducted to assess worst case lead levels in water from homes and schools in the cities of Brandon and Portage la Prairie. For Brandon, the average lead concentrations were For Portage la Prairie, the average lead concentrations were This study also included the collection of first-draw, second flushed and 5-minute flushed samples from schools in Brandon and Portage la Prairie five schools in each city.

For schools in Portage la Prairie, the average lead concentrations were 9.